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Magical World

Wouldn't it be lovely if, with just a twitch of the nose, life, or any aspect of it could be changed. Instead, positive changes always seem to involve tremendously hard work, determination, and endless setbacks. How lovely it would be to have the powers of Samantha Stephens.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Sort of Random Thoughts

I've been thinking again. AtP says I'm always doing that, and he's right. However, there are times when the items of thought are a little overwhelming. I've mentioned that I found an old friend after many years. He and I first met when we were nine, and were friends until I got married, which is when I lost track of him. It's been wonderful to talk with him again, but it also raises some memories of a difficult time in my life, and makes me a little uncomfortable in many ways.

In the last year I've been asked by some people about my thoughts on being gay, married, "Mormon"... This is not something on which I spend a lot of time. There was a period in my life when I thought things through, read everything I could read, studied different religions, and made a decision. It sounds simplistic, but it's pretty much how I've lived my life: look at the options, weigh the pros and cons, look at my strengths and weaknesses, decide what will be. Most of the time this has worked for me.

I've never been one to be swayed by sentiment or passion. Which isn't to say I don't have strong feelings and ideas--it's just that those belong solely to me, and I probably won't be swayed by those belonging to others. Contrived humor, in general, doesn't make me laugh. Touching, tragic, or sentimental stories, however, do--I think they're hilarious. And I don't have AtP's, Sully's, or Tolkien Boy's ability to lend validation and sympathy without laughing at the afflicted person first. The chat venue is good for me, because no one can see me doubled over in laughter as people tell me the tragedies of their lives. Perhaps that's why I've been able to keep some online friendships longer than many in-person ones.

Given the above personality traits, I have a fairly open-minded opinion about my orientation, past experiences, and current marital bliss. However, I'm finally at a point where I can verbalize some of my feelings along with my ideas--so, I'm going to.

My orientation, I have to admit, has never been something that troubled me deeply. I found it shocking in the beginning, and then it became rather interesting. Because I discovered my sexuality at a time when I adamantly believed deity did not exist, I felt little guilt or shame. I read all that I could find (which was lamentably little) on the subject, and associated myself with friends who were gay-friendly. I listened to their ideas and experiences and thought about my own situation. I knew this was something I would never share with family members--and I had extensive plans to distance myself from my family at the earliest possible opportunity. However, along with the gender/sexuality study, I was also reading everything I could find about God and religion.

Without going into details, I eventually came to the conclusion that God did, indeed, exist, and that he loved me. Deeper study found me somehow believing that the LDS church might not be true, but it's gospel and tenets might be. This led to some soul-searching, some new ideas, and some incredibly intense meditation. I read everything negative about the church that I could find. I questioned each premise and teaching. I scoffed at eternity and families. And in the end it became clear to me that in spite of my skepticism, there were certain things I could not doubt. For me, my path had been circular--I ended up with a knowledge I now prize beyond all else.

With this new knowledge I made the decision that, regardless of what I might feel or think in my emotional and physical desires, I would follow what I believed to be true, and if my God was real, he would help me. I have not been disappointed by the Big Guy.

I suppose I dedicate most of my agonizing time toward the sexual abuse of my past because it's the one area in which I had no control, and I can't change any part of that. For me, that's frustrating beyond belief. It's also the area in which my self-worth feels most challenged. I still have days when I feel that I should not be with anyone for fear of tainting or ruining them in some way. I perceive myself as a black stain on all humanity. It feels sickening and dark and helpless. In the past, when those feelings would surface I buried myself in many hours of practice, or I read books, but regardless of what I chose to distract myself, I did it alone. Nowadays, I sometimes tell a trusted friend. He never fails to assure me that I am not disgusting, that he loves me, that it does not abase him to spend time with me. That's a new experience, one I'm still trying to understand. I'm hoping he doesn't get tired of my insecurity and go away, because to my amazement, I'm beginning to believe that he might be right. If he can be with me when I'm vile, and still care about me, perhaps there is salvation for one such as I. I have known with my head that this is true. He is helping me to convince my heart.

Last night Tolkien Boy asked me what Darrin and I are like when we're together. He's actually been with both of us, but truthfully, when Darrin and I are with friends, we don't spend that time with each other--we want to spend time with those who will be leaving shortly. When we first got married, Darrin and I loved spending time together. When I was away from him I experienced an intense longing to be near him. We were working and going to school. When we finally came together, we would spend hours talking about the trivia in our lives. Darrin knows more about music history, theory, pedagogy, performance, and composition than anyone outside of the field should know. He loves to listen to the music (but believes everything he enjoys was written by Mozart--which is inaccurate, but hilarious). I, in turn, made an attempt to learn French, which I can read and write, but will never be able to speak with any degree of fluency (a fact that I think makes Darrin secretly feel superior to me). I feigned interest in politics and business, which served me well, as I now own my own business and am a registered financial advisor and tax preparer.

I suppose the thing that makes us unique is that when we are alone, one on one, we communicate with joy and intensity. But when in a group, we mostly mingle with others, coming together briefly, then finding someone else with whom to speak. There is a comfort in knowing that Darrin is always there for me. I don't have to remain at his side, and am completely free to form friendships with others and share those with him--and he does the same for me. I know if I'm gone, there will always be a place for me to return to, and he will be waiting--and I do the same for him.

Darrin taught me to play Backgammon. I taught him to cheat at Monopoly. He taught me to trust him. I taught him to have patience with me. He taught me to enjoy certain television programs (on occasion) and to sit through a movie (on occasion). I'm still trying to teach him the joy of constant movement--I don't think this one's going to take. There is no one I love more, or in as many ways. I love the fact that he feels no rivalry or possessiveness--those are two traits that would push me away very quickly. If there is one thing I don't like--it's that he's gone so much. I would live, work, and play with him 24-7, if possible.

Interesting. There seems to be no way to end this particular post. Perhaps, considering the subject matter, that's appropriate.

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